Plants and Medicine: Art and Science in Botanical Prints
March 19, 2013 – November 17, 2013
This exhibition explores the topic of plants as medicinal treatment through a selection of sixteen engravings and woodcuts drawn from the Harn’s collection of herbal prints dating from the 16th to 18th centuries. Although few physicians or pharmacists grow herbs or compound treatments today, medicinal herbs were among the earliest of ingestible treatments. In the past, those who used plants to treat illness typically relied upon human and animal observation or employed traditional knowledge and superstition. Illustrated herbals and botanicals became a crucial form for conveying reliable information about plants and were critical to fostering knowledge based upon rigorous observation and consistent identification of species. Plants and Medicine is co-curated by Dulce Román, Curator of Modern Art, and Nina Stoyan-Rosenzweig, Archivist, Health Science Center Libraries. The exhibition is made possible by The Dr. Madelyn M. Lockhart Endowment for Focus Exhibitions at the Harn Museum of Art.